Meet Catherine (Cat) Stamm from our New York City office. Cat was recently promoted to Director level, and it makes us incredibly proud to see someone who joined us straight out of college thrive in what is still very much a male-dominated industry. Over the past six years, Cat has excelled in her various roles at Kivu. From bright-eyed graduate to acknowledged leader, Cat combines cyber security expertise and practice with a keen sense of customer service and people management. We recently sat down with Cat and asked her a few questions.
How did you start with Kivu – what made you join?
I started about six and half years ago, at a time when there were about 10 people in the firm. I had studied at Champlain College, and Kivu has always had a really close relationship with that school. I think Kivu found my name in one of the college’s resume books, and things took off from there. I knew Kivu was still considered a “start-up” at the time, and that immediately drew me in.
What does your day-to-day job look like?
I spend a lot of my time talking with clients as well as checking in with my team to make sure they have everything they need to be successful. I try to keep at least 1 case on my plate so that I can be up to date on what everyone else is seeing. I also spend time thinking about and brainstorming how to improve our internal processes and getting my team’s input to make them better.
What was a memorable moment in your career at Kivu – and why?
Opening the Vermont office was a big moment for me because Kim (Kim Niquette, Kivu’s CEO) really listened to my ideas and then gave me the opportunity to make them a reality. We worked with Champlain College, hired top talent, and are working on promoting Kivu in Vermont and throughout New England.
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
My team for sure! Our greatest asset at Kivu is our people – we have a fantastic team of highly skilled individuals. I am always impressed that when a new situation comes along, someone on the team is bound to have a solution. I really believe there isn’t a problem you can throw at our employees that won’t be solved. I also have very specific goals for myself, what I want out of my life and career, and Kivu aligns really well with that.
What are your top tips for career progression at Kivu?
Four things spring to mind, let me list them:
- Dedication and commitment – Go the extra mile and see things through to the end. Soon, you will have clients asking for you specifically.
- Accept the opportunities presented to you – Don’t say no to new tasks, be willing to expand your skillset, and don’t be afraid to take on a challenge.
- Preparation – Anticipate what questions and problems may be coming your way.
- Take initiative – If you want to do something, come up with a game plan, present it to your manager, and see it through.
What advice could you give to women who are looking to either break into the cyber industry, or progress further in the field?
This is an industry that changes almost daily, so it’s important to remember that it is OK to not have all the answers all the time. There are a lot of powerful women doing forensics and cyber security, and they are the best in the field. Find women role models, like Cindy Murphy or Alissa Torres or Sarah Edwards, and read everything written by them and about them. Know your stuff and be a badass about it. Do what you do because it’s fun, and you’re really good at it. If possible, find a firm with women in leadership. It has always motivated me that our CEO is a woman, and there are many other women leaders at Kivu.
How do you describe Kivu to friends and family?
I try to keep what Kivu does really simple, or else I will lose them. I usually say something like, “We investigate computer crimes. If someone gets hacked, we try to figure out how it happened and help prevent it in the future.”
And if you had to choose one word to describe Kivu – what would it be?
Persistent. Kivu is continuously aiming to do things better and be the best in the industry.
Lastly, we have staff and partners around the world, so how would you describe New York City to them in three words?
Alive. Fast. Proud.
At Kivu, we take pride in the amazing team we’ve built over the last ten years. Some of our Kivu team members are fresh out of college, while others have been here since the beginning. All of them bring incredible skills, expertise, curiosity and ideas to the table.
Want to join the Kivu team? Then get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.